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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Feb 8, 2014 9:21am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

In reading the recent comments regarding the new 5/14/74 cds , I sense disappointment . I remember the days when anything from 74 was the rarest of mana . The tape I first had, had just the WRS>China Doll chunk . Man was that a treat , especially compared to the show we we seeing when I got the tape (86-87). Now, that we have so much available , and in high quality , it doesn't seem so special . Is this from being jaded, form so much exposure , or better insight from hearing it in context, and so clearly ?
As for this show itself , I share a mix of the feeling expressed here . Maybe not the most impressive show from a year of some very impressive shows , but taken on it's own terms, quite enjoyable . Not a barnburner, or mind blower, but an introspective , laid back journey (whitha surprise wakeup with that NFA>GDTRFB)..
Are we undervaluing shows because of the glut, and the the maybe too clear sound (the old AUD vs SBD debate) ? Or are our rose colored memories being challenged?

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Poster: kochman Date: Feb 8, 2014 3:24pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Yes, good point, but it's to the point where we can afford to be critical, and therefore have an even better listening experience.
I remember the days of cassettes, and being so glad to get anything.
Now that I have, well, everything, as we all can have, it's good to really approach it with method, and get down to what is really awesome.

Controversial show #1 - Barton Hall 5/8/77

So many people cut their teeth on this one. Well circulated with great SQ.
Is it the best?
Of the year?
Of the month?
Of the week?

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Poster: Diamondhead Date: Feb 8, 2014 3:56pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Took the words right off of my keyboard.

"Is it the best?
Of the year?
Of the month?
Of the week?"

No - no - no - no.

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Poster: c-freedom Date: Feb 8, 2014 4:00pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

I will say this 7 years ago when cliff was taking everyone to task for putting high ratings on shows with garbage sound quality he was correct.
I want the best sound I can get- it makes so much of a difference.
How does one communicate the importance of quality sound without coming off sounding like the critic of the month from some technical journal on room acoustics and their relationship to quantum physics ???

And as I write this I have just told the wife I can no longer communicate verbally because I am into the ROW JIMMY of 5.14.74 -I do really like this set list I probably couldn't even make a better fantasy set up.
The tuning up sounds like classical music fugues before WRS.

"With that jaded, faded, junky nurse.
Oh what pleasant company." -Stones

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Poster: Diamondhead Date: Feb 8, 2014 8:38pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Don't know if I agree. I think when it comes to the Dead, chasing the sound can influence listening. Lord knows I have done that in my many years of stereo buying, but with the Dead I long ago made my peace with "tape" sound and was so happy to have it that I learned to listen through it. I can see Cliff's point but it doesn't always work for me. I can see rating a show highly and acknowledging that the sound is just adequate.

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Poster: kochman Date: Feb 9, 2014 7:04am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

The fact is, with less SQ, we miss things we might not have gotten.
Listen to 9/3/80 Wise AUD, then listen to the official release...
It's a largely different experience, not just a matter of accepting a hiss.

We'll take what we can get, of course, and some shows shine out even from beneath muddled SQ...

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Poster: elbow1126 Date: Feb 8, 2014 4:23pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

"So many people cut their teeth on this one. Well circulated with great SQ.
Is it the best?
Of the year?
Of the month?
Of the week?"

Probably not (i prefer the next night). But would you recommend it to someone as a show they should listen to? I think the answer is absolutely yes. So does it matter whether its "overrated?" Not a bit.

I think it would be far more informative to simply rate shows as "must listen," "worth a listen" or "for completists only." Barton would definitely fall in the first category. I think we could come to a consensus using this much more simplified approach.

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Feb 8, 2014 3:16pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

I think it's purely the number of shows that are available now. If you've only heard a few '74 shows, each one will be special. When you can access every one on the Archive and compare them, for me it's natural to start thinking, "well, they could've picked a better one" and so on.

I'm not sure about your sound quality point - it was different in the '80s, when lots of tapes sounded like mud, but now that almost any show (esp. from the early '70s) is available in good-quality SBD, no released show is going to jump out that much on SQ alone.

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Poster: c-freedom Date: Feb 8, 2014 2:22pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Thanks for this insightful post Dudley Dead.

Remember the dude in THE GRATEFUL DEAD MOVIE who did not want a movie made. That moment was surreal but it is part of what makes the whole dead scene so diverse and yes at times absolutely tripped out.

We have reviewers sounding like harsh music critics but we all know that 99.9 % of them are Dead to the core.

"Together more or less in line we just keep Truckin on"

After more KPFA marathon I am diving into Second Set of 5.14.74--I can't wait!

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Feb 8, 2014 11:21pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Welcome to the 21st century, where too much of everything is just the new normal ...

Do we ever experience something as "rare" anymore? And I don't mean just GD. I collect old books. Is an obscure book really so exciting if we can get it on eBay (along with a dozen others that are similar) or, alternately, just read it online for free this minute? No poking around old bookstores anymore for a single exciting Find. It's all here, at the click of a keystroke.

Think of an interest. Any interest. Everything is around in huge amounts; nothing is rare. I'm not being a curmudgeon. I appreciate the Information Superhighway (remember that phrase?) as much as anyone. And "life is change, how it differs from the rocks."

But, yeah ... we undervalue because of glut and exposure, and that's human nature, and the glut isn't just GD. It isn't even just digital.

Ever gone on a long trek, without much variety of food, and get back and have a banana or something and it's just WOW? Well, a banana really is kind of wow. But it's wow-ier when you haven't had one. Do you experience the true yumminess of the banana better, or is it "rose-colored taste buds"?

We all pretty much live in a world where bananas are everywhere. 5/14/74 is a rare book, a banana, a you-name-it.

Here's a formerly rare bit of film about a formerly rare thing that people had to be TAUGHT how to eat. Enjoy :-)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFDOI24RRAE

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Poster: Diamondhead Date: Feb 9, 2014 7:00pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Good analysis. I guess that's why I try to stop listening to the Dead for periods of time. Trying to regain the shock of listening to something special and having the hairs on the back of my neck jump. What they call in Hawaii, chicken-skin moments.

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Poster: tilomagnet Date: Feb 9, 2014 10:56am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Hmm, this show had been so widely circulated, so everyone knew what to expect right?

I think its still a standout if only for the rare (compared to 72/73) DS....and its a bloody great Star. The flow of WRS>DS>Doll is just about perfect and NFA>GDTRFB is even higher energy than usual. Theres some so-so performances in set 1 but name one of those marathon shows without!!

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Feb 9, 2014 10:57am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

AR :Thanks !

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Poster: Pig Street ! Date: Feb 8, 2014 9:48am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

I believe so, case in point, I too had that well circulated piece of the show during the cassette trading daze, it was regarded as the top notch for 74' at the time. I do not dislike the show, i felt it may have been picked due to the popularity versus the performance.

Attachment: 19740512_1813.jpg

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Poster: c-freedom Date: Feb 8, 2014 4:17pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Hey Pig Street;

That is a great j-peg photo!

Thanks for the encouragement in your other post.

Regarding show reviews:

Man one of the heads who reviewed 5.14.74 said something about the Montana show that was just released being like in the low 30's of close to 40 shows he reviewed.
Well I listened to just set one of the 5.14.74 soundboard and if he has 30 + shows ahead of this I need that entire list right now because back in the day the only tape I had even close to this quality was FM-broadcasts and a soundboard from Madison Wisconsin- early -73.
So I am just blown away because I am busy e-mail threads to my older musician friends of every hot soundboard I come across on the archive.
I am probably 100 full shows deep. ( listening to shows from start to finish) and the Montana 74 show is just hot. When I can hear if Keith is letting loose or holding back. and I can hear the slightest hesitation in Garcia's vocals. And in 1974 you really need perfect sound to hear that.
I am not talking mistakes but just where Jerry chooses to emphasize a phrase. Also with Weir I can hear him drawl out certain words like he is Elvis or something.
Hearing Phil singing back ground on B.E. to the point that I know Phil is singing his butt off. And Donna I listen to her and think wow that sister had it going on. (Only time she bothered me was usually when her and Bobby were going ballistic during One More Saturday Night) but heck it was a rock concert. Somebody had to get overly worked up in the band and it wasn't going to be Lesh or Garcia. Part of a concert is release. Yes Garcia had the meltdown jam and Phil dropped bass bombs and Weir and Donna just went nuts.
"It's only rock and roll but I like it"

The truth I think everyone should keep in mind is that we are approaching the point of being on stage with the musicians that is what I am starting to feel like.
And we need to remember that music is an art form it is never ideal if it represents reality because reality is distorted by this and that n a fallen world.
Just to be able hear Billy clearly on the drums and to distinguish his movements across his kit (cymbals and all)

Jerry used to say 'somebody would tell me that was the greatest show ever and all I could think was my feet were kinda itchy'
The sound we are getting on shows is a real privilege.
I know it is good to be discerning but I know there is a real generation gap between those who listened live and then scrounged for a decent tape and today's generation of heads that have a soundboard vault at their disposal.
We need both because without the technical side we would become an oldies gig and without the veteran heads we would be a dying church or wax museum.


This post was modified by c-freedom on 2014-02-09 00:17:04

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Poster: Space Jogger Date: Feb 8, 2014 4:40pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

In the spirit of the Sochi Olympics I would award this show/release a silver medal. I feel like all of the gold medal shows have already been mined from '74. Except for the Winterland run, which has some flaws, but as a whole run is pretty amazing. There may be some gold moments left in some shows to be released from '74, but not complete shows, unless some of the chopped up Picks get re-released in their entirety.

I had the pleasure of listening to the new 5/14/74 release in headphones at work the other day. The sound is nothing to be scoffed at; the separation is amazing, especially considering this a 40 year old 2-track recording. It may be the best sounding '74 release.

Billy drives this show. He's hungry and he gets his fill. No pun intended, but the extra fills are everywhere: rolling tom fills, extra triplets on the high-hats and cymbals, jumping in and out of rhythm effortlessly and all kinds of other drum acrobatics. It seems like for most of the show the rest of the band is just trying to keep up with his awesome performance.

There are all kinds of great moments to be had on this release ( and I do love this release ). I think most heads know that, but they also know that the Dead as a whole can sustain a higher level of energy and performance throughout a show, and some of those shows still have not been released yet.

Anyway, don't sleep on Jerry's jazz virtuoso moments during Dark Star; the only time I've heard him deliver those kinds of tones and they are very intimate.

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Poster: c-freedom Date: Feb 8, 2014 5:07pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Are we jaded with too much content and clarity in our Dead listening ?

Well written Space Jogger!

I think the Weather Report was a nice fit for segue into the Dark Star. I know some people like to see where the Dark Star heads but I find it cool to see how it gets there.
The China Doll out of Dark Star is pretty tasty as well!